Bistro Roast Chicken
Miso Noodle Soup with Meatballs
Salty, savory miso becomes the backbone of this soup; try adding it to dressings and marinades too. We add chile-and-honey-spiked pork meatballs to the soup; you could also use shredded rotisserie chicken breast or cubed tofu. Want to get ahead on tomorrow's dinner? Double the meatball mixture, shape half into patties, and sear for Asian-style sliders. Serve with Baby Bok Choy and Cucumber Salad.
Sautéed Salmon with Citrus Salsa
Consider this light dinner an antidote to a season of rich stews, braises, and roasts. Serve with Cilantro Quinoa with Pine Nuts for date night, or double for 4 people. The tart, bright citrus topper cuts through the natural fattiness of the salmon; it would overwhelm lighter fish like cod or flounder. After freeing the citrus sections, squeeze the membranes over a bowl and make a quick vinaigrette for enjoying during the week. Change up the salsa with chopped tart-crisp apples and a seeded minced jalapeño, or try diced ripe pear and pomegranate arils.
Almond-Crusted Trout with Dill
Smaller trout are often butterflied not separated into fillets, at the fish counter. Each butterflied fish is one serving. Trout gets an extra-crispy crust from the almonds. You could sub flounder for the trout and pecans or walnuts for the almonds. Serve with Fresh Brussels Sprouts Salad with Dijon Dressing.
Lemon-Herb Risotto with Shrimp and Haricots Verts
Risotto requires no special technique, just the patience to keep stirring. Use a ladle to add liquid in even amounts. Sautéed fennel adds a touch of sweetness, but you can leave it out if you prefer and sprinkle on a little dill at the end instead. We pair this staff favorite with Grilled Balsamic Radicchio with Pine Nuts. Radicchio—that bitter, crunchy, scarlet and white vegetable Italians adore, becomes entirely different when roasted or grilled. Red and white-veined radicchio, like its chicory relatives endive and frisée, is loved and sometimes feared for its bitter edge. Tossed into a salad, radicchio is bright and assertive. Sautéed, grilled, or baked, its sharp character mellows. Its color deepens and the flavor turns mellow and nutty, with just a hint of bitterness remaining.
Tuna Spring Rolls with Pineapple Dipping Sauce
Look for sustainable yellowfin tuna caught off the U.S. Pacific coast, or sub ½ pound cooked shrimp. Look for rice paper wrappers on the Asian foods aisle of the grocery store; if you can't find them, turn the rolls into lettuce wraps. Use pineapple preserves as a glaze for pork, add to a grilled jam and cheese sandwich, or dollop over coconut ice cream.
Grilled Balsamic Chicken Salad with Spiced Pecans
You'll want to double the sweet and spicy sautéed pecans for snacking during the week. Sub fresh summer fruit like blueberries or nectarines for the raspberries. Grill the chicken and make the spiced pecans in advance. Change up the greens, fruit, and dressing for fast lunches.
Seared Mahimahi with Tomato-Cucumber Relish
Mahimahi has a sturdy, dense texture that holds up to the marinade (more delicate fish like snapper or tilapia would cure in the the lime juice). If using a lighter fish, skip the marinade and squeeze lime wedge over the fish after cooking instead.
Strawberry-Chicken Salad with Pecans
This main-dish salad features juicy strawberries at their seasonal peak.
Simple Flaky Crab Cakes
These crab cakes hold together best with dry, finely ground whole-wheat breadcrumbs; if you use whole-wheat panko, they may fall apart in the pan. Chives have a delicate onion flavor that won't overpower the crab.
Sheet Pan Chicken with Roasted Baby Potatoes
A very hot oven quickly roasts the potatoes and finishes the chicken without overcooking. You can substitute fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise, for the small Yukon gold potatoes. Tarragon and mustard are a perfect pair—the herb's slightly sweet anise notes balance the mustard's pungency. Serve with Chile and Lime Roasted Carrots.
Bistro Steak and Roasted Potatoes
This restaurant-worthy meal feels date-night special. Make sure to let the meat rest before slicing so the juices can redistribute.
Greek Shrimp with White Beans, Tomato Sauce, and Feta
This simple, Tuscan-inspired stew is the perfect casual supper for two, though it can easily be doubled. Enjoy leftovers with a piece of whole-grain French bread baguette for dunking. Chop the fresh fennel fronds and stir a little into the shrimp mixture, top a fresh salad, or make a peso.
Baked Chicken Breasts
White wine and Dijon mustard are a classic bistro-style pair for chicken. Carrots add body and a touch of sweetness to the pan sauce, but you can leave them out, if you like. Slice the tomatoes horizontally to have a sturdier base and more surface area for the crispy topping.
Beef Tenderloin Steaks with Chipotle Butter and Bell Pepper Sauté
Make sure the cast-iron skillet is hot before adding the steaks so that they get a nicely browned crust on both sides. We like both red and orange peppers, though just one color will work. In place of tenderloin steaks, you can also use top blade steaks or petite tenders.
Shrimp Summer Rolls with Sesame-Soy Dipping Sauce
The popular appetizer becomes a substantial summer entrée for two. Speed up prep time by having all of the ingredients ready in small bowls before assembling. Mirin has a sweet, slightly acidic flavor that rounds out the dipping sauce. Dry sherry will also work.
Grilled Flank Steak with Cherry-Pecan Rice
With just enough for two, flank steak, grilled simply with salt, pepper, cumin, and paprika, delivers bold flavor and complements the sweetness of the rice, which stars fresh cherries, toasted pecans, and sliced carrots.
Tuscan Steak Salad
A steak dinner for two feels date-night special, but this meal couldn't be easier. One 8-ounce strip steak is just enough for two; if you care for different levels of doneness, cut the steak in half before grilling.
Coriander-Thyme Lamb Chops with Yogurt Sauce
Lamb loin chops look like minature T-bone steaks and are much leaner than lamb shoulder shops. If you can't find them, you can substitute 2 (4-ounce) beef tenderloin steaks. Whole cumin seeds retain their flavor longer than ground cumin. Crush with a small heavy skillet.
Orange-Glazed Salmon with Olive Quinoa
The fragrant orange glaze caramelizes as the salmon quickly cooks under the broiler. To serve 4, double the salmon, glaze, and quinoa, and increase the water for the quinoa to 1¼ cups.
Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Shrimp
Simple, fresh, and perfectly portioned for two, this main dish salad is great for a quiet weeknight.
Filet Mignon with Mushroom-Wine Sauce
Filet Mignon with Mushroom-Wine Sauce is a quick but posh dinner for two. For easy sides, serve with packaged refrigerated mashed potatoes and bagged salad greens with bottled dressing.
Risotto must be served immediately so you can best savor its rich creaminess. With this version, there's just enough for two healthful portions. Complete the meal with a salad, bread, and crisp white wine.
The luxurious, velvety texture of a good pasta carbonara is ephemeral at best, so you must enjoy it right away. Tempering the egg with hot pasta water keeps the sauce creamy by preventing it from curdling. For a smoky taste, use bacon in place of pancetta.
Herbed Chicken and Dumplings
Fluffy herb-flecked dumplings, tender vegetables, and rich dark-meat chicken combine in this soul-satisfying classic. Garnish with parsley sprigs, if desired.
Pan-Seared Scallops on Linguine
A touch of cream gives the slightly tangy sauce a silky-smooth finish in Pan-Seared Scallops on Linguine with Tomato-Cream Sauce. Be sure to serve this dish with bread so you can savor every drop of sauce.
Roasted Lobster Tails
This sophisticated yet cozy romantic meal features Roasted Lobster Tails paired with a Ginger Dipping Sauce as the main course. Side dishes include Snow Peas and Cherry Tomatoes and Bitter Greens With Tarragon Vinaigrette and Pine Nuts.
Make Ahead Tip: The dipping sauce that accompanies the lobster tails can be made up to five days in advance and refrigerated. Let it come to room temperature before adding the green onions.
Chicken with Prosciutto and Tomatoes Over Polenta
Lightly breaded chicken thighs are seasoned with sage and white wine, topped with a tomato mixture, and served over polenta. Time-saving tip: while the chicken cooks, prepare the polenta.
Roasted Rack of Lamb
Take a make-ahead approach to cook a memorable feast for your sweetheart featuring Fennel and Rosemary-Crusted Roasted Rack of Lamb, Truffled Polenta, and Spicy-Sweet Pepper Medley.
Rosemary Shrimp Scampi Skewers
Threading olive oil-marinated shrimp on rosemary-branch skewers imparts a subtle herb flavor to the dish and a fantastic scent to your table. Rosemary has a long history of being associated with the heart. It has been believed by many to be a love charm, by others to be a token of remembrance and fidelity, and by some to be a potent aphrodisiac. Bamboo skewers also work quite well. Serve with steamed haricots verts.
Coconut and Basil Steamed Mussels
This elegant seafood dish goes perfectly paired with spinach and scallion rice. Ready in just 20 minutes, it’s the perfect mid-week romantic meal for two.
Let your significant other know just how much you care with this breakfast omelet, made with black beans and cheddar cheese. It’ll be a wonderful way to start the day off right!
Grilled Lime-Soy Tuna with Noodles
This Asian-inspired meal is the ultimate date-night dinner and mixes textures and tastes for a unique, full-flavored dish.
Chicken Milanese with Spring Greens
For a comfortable, cozy meal for two, try this delectable breaded chicken recipe. Serve with rice pilaf or fresh vegetables and lemon wedges.
Try this simple, elegant recipe for date night at home. Scallops cook quickly and are packed with delicious flavor. This dish serves well with wide rice noodles and sugar snap peas.
Veal Medallions with Apple-Thyme Sauce
This luxurious meal for two uses a sweet apple-thyme sauce for an exquisite aroma and taste. Tip: To prevent the apple from turning brown, chop it while the sauce is cooking down.
Deviled Crab Boules with Beurre Blanc
Crusty individual bread rounds are stuffed with succulent crab and topped with a buttery wine sauce. Serve with white wine or champagne.
Make-ahead tip: Prepare the bread shells and crab filling up to a day ahead of time. Just store the shells at room temperature in a zip-top plastic bag, and refrigerate the crab filling.
Posole with Turkey and Heart-Shaped Chipotle Gorditas
A gordita, which means "little fat one" in Spanish (no offense intended), is a thick corn tortilla. In this recipe, we used a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make sweet designs – perfect when creating this dish for someone special. Also, because gorditas are more practical to make in larger quantities, this recipe makes enough for two meals.
Spice Rubbed Pork Chops
This pork chop dinner for two uses a hint of brown sugar to round out the flavors of the smoky, robust spice rub. Serve with roasted veggies and a glass of sweet Riesling.
Pan Grilled Thai Tuna Salad
For a lighter, yet still romantic dinner, try making this spicy tuna salad. It pairs wonderfully with a side of crunchy rice crackers.